Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "O Word Of God Incarnate"1 (Lyrics)
2 Corinthians 1:3-4 – We give thanks to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. He is our Father Who shows us loving-kindness and our God Who gives us comfort. He gives us comfort in all our troubles. Then we can comfort other people who have the same troubles. We give the same kind of comfort God gives us. (NLV)
I almost missed the happiness that God has had for me in life, when I decided to end it at the age of 17. Miserable, lonely, and friendless, I could not see this changing in the future. What good is my life? I questioned, not realizing that my life did not belong to me.
I decided to put myself in a situation where someone would kill me, and I wandered off down a dark street in a bad part of town. God sent another student, angel-like, to find me and rescue me. He asked me to promise that I would "never do that again".
Many years later as I thought about that promise, it occurred to me that he couldn't have known that I had intended suicide. It must have appeared to him that I was only promising not to wander off. I turned once again to the God who had found me, and with tears streaming down my face, I finally wrote this story for a national newspaper. I told how I had faithfully kept the promise that I thought I'd made, drawing closer to God when suicidal feelings occurred. I included all the happiness and joy that kept occurring in my life since I'd given it to God. So here I was, writing and praying for others in the same pain.
Not long after my story was published, a friend in another town was counselling a new immigrant. "How hard it was, coming to another country," the woman said to my friend in broken English. "Suicide was in my mind. But then," she continued, "I read this story in the paper …" and from her wallet, she pulled out a tattered copy of what I'd written.
God had His own purpose in letting me see that I had helped somebody else, reminding me that I needed to tell the stories that were mine to tell. Often, I have heard someone say, "Oh, I can't write. I wouldn't know how." But the stories of our lives are our special gift to others. In a real sense, writing them is a debt that we owe to those we will never meet. No one can tell your stories better than you. Someone said, "God speaks to us all a little differently, hoping that we'll tell one another." We get better at it as we do it and share it.
Isaiah 52:7 – How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of him who brings good news, who tells of peace and brings good news of happiness, who tells of saving power, and says to Zion, "Your God rules!" (NLV)
Prayer: Dear Father God, how thankful we are for Your grace that found us and kept us when we were lost and afraid. How grateful we are that You continually sustain us and keep us ever walking in Your ways. In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.